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How Alimta Copay Assistance Works
1 – Check Your Coverage/Benefits Verification
Our team of expert billers finds the best avenues of coverage that minimize out-of-pocket costs.
2 – Transfer Prescription to AmeriPharma
We process your prescription by working with your previous pharmacy or prescriber, making the transition quick and easy.
3 – Prior Authorization
Our team of specialists obtains approval from your insurance companies within 24 to 72 hours.
4 – Copay Assistance & Financial Aid
We secure financial aid and decrease copays, out-of-pocket expenses, and high deductibles. To date, AmeriPharma Specialty Care has secured $55 million in financial assistance for our patients.
5 – Nursing Care Coordination
AmeriPharma puts your schedule and home environment first when scheduling and coordinating one of our specialized nurses for your in-home infusions.
6 – Delivery Coordination
Medications are always delivered in strict compliance with the specific requirements for immune globulin shipping. Next-day and overnight cold-chain deliveries are coordinated around your schedule.
What Is Alimta?
Alimta is categorized as a chemotherapy drug (antineoplastic). Healthcare providers use this medication to treat certain cancer types, including:
- Locally advanced or metastatic nonsquamous non-small cell lung cancer
- Malignant pleural mesothelioma
Researchers are also studying this medicine for use in other types of cancer. Some doctors may prescribe it for other cancers or conditions if they believe it can benefit the patient. Other names listed for this drug are LY231514 and Pemfexy. It is most commonly recognized under the generic name pemetrexed disodium.
Pemetrexed was FDA-approved for use in 2004. It is an antimetabolite, a category of cancer-fighting drugs that healthcare providers have used for about 70 years. Antimetabolites are some of the oldest drugs used for fighting cancer. They are also one of the drugs doctors use most often to treat cancer patients.
How Does Alimta Work?
Antimetabolites mimic and work similarly to some of the molecules that cancer cells use to make DNA. This results in the cancer cells mistaking the antimetabolite medication for the ingredients they need. When the cells integrate the use of the drug, it interferes with their ability to create enzymes. Cancer cells need enzymes for cell division. When the cancer cells can’t divide, they die off.
Pemetrexed is in a subcategory of antimetabolite drugs called folic acid analogs. This drug mimics the enzyme cancer cells need to convert folic acid to complete their DNA and RNA synthesis. Stopping the formation of DNA and RNA results in the inability of cell (both healthy and cancer) growth to occur.
Other subcategories of antimetabolite drugs include pyrimidine and purine analogs. These drugs also have a similar mechanism of action and structure to pemetrexed, causing a disruption in the creation of DNA and RNA in cancer cells.
Copay and Financial Assistance
AmeriPharma Specialty Care alleviates financial burdens for patients and their families
Advanced software locates funding sources to match you with top-dollar foundation programs
One of our copay assistance specialists will assist with the application process
Automatic updates will be sent to you and your physician on the status of the funding
Alimta Side Effects
Severe side effects of pemetrexed include:
- Swelling of the face, tongue, or throat indicating an allergic reaction
- Swelling in the hands, feet, and ankles
- Numbness or tingling in the skin
- Signs of liver problems, including dark urine, yellowing skin and eyes, stomach pain, and vomiting that doesn’t stop
- Signs of kidney problems, including a change in the amount of urine
- Blisters or sores
- Coughing or shortness of breath
- Severe rash that feels like a sunburn
- Fever, cough, or sore throat that doesn’t go away
- Unusual tiredness
Patients experiencing severe side effects should tell the doctor right away.
Some common side effects of pemetrexed are:
- Upset stomach, nausea, and vomiting
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Changes in taste or loss of appetite
- Sores in the mouth
- Temporary hair loss
Some patients using pemetrexed can experience severe nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting. To minimize these symptoms, patients may try eating small meals or avoiding food before treatment. Doctors may also prescribe medications to help relieve these symptoms.
Pemetrexed can cause bone marrow function to decrease, which may lead to a reduction in blood cells. This effect may cause patients to:
- Develop anemia
- Bruise or bleed easily
- Have trouble fighting off infections
Patients should notify the doctor if they develop unusual tiredness or pale skin, or if they bruise and bleed easily.
Alimta Dosing Information
Patients receive pemetrexed by intravenous infusion. Your healthcare provider may give you a steroid dose the day before you start your treatment. The steroid may help reduce the chance of a rash or infusion-related reactions. It is recommended to take the steroid dose with breakfast or lunch to help reduce the side effects.
Patients are also recommended to take folic acid tablets starting 1 week before chemotherapy begins, during their treatment, and for 3 weeks after their last dose.
Patients may receive vitamin B12 injections 1 to 3 weeks before treatment begins. After the initial course, patients may receive B12 injections every third cycle. Folic acid and vitamin B12 supplements can help relieve some of the side effects of pemetrexed.
Each patient’s pemetrexed dose will depend on the patient’s weight and height. Chemotherapy regimens are usually given on a 21-day cycle for four to six treatment cycles but are dependent on the diagnosis and clinical response to the therapy.